The New Zealand Climate Science Coalition has raised questions about the death of member Denis Dutton.
Dutton, an academic, sceptic and renowned contrarian, died on Tuesday aged 66. He was also a foundation member of the Coalition.
However, fears that Dutton’s death would be a setback in the Coalition’s quest to prove that the evidence of climate change is false, have been downplayed.
Coalition spokesman Terry Dunleavy said that there was no evidence that Dutton had died.
“If you look at the data over an extended period, it shows that Professor Dutton was definitely alive only a few days ago,” said Mr Dunleavy.
“It is simply premature to attribute Dutton’s recent physical inactivity to the fact that he is deceased. There could be any number of explanations for the anomalies in breathing, heart rate, brain activity and other bodily functions being seen.”
Mr Dunleavy said that the evidence of doctors was non conclusive.
“One can hardly be surprised that a medical expert declared death in these circumstances,” said Mr Dunleavy.
“Much of his or her training is devoted to ascertaining whether someone has died. These doctors are preconditioned to look for death. The advancement of their careers depends upon it. They can hardly be regarded as impartial experts, can they?”
Mr Dunleany said that it was time that a full review of Dutton’s medical data took place, and that the review was taken out of the hands of doctors and medical professionals.
“We would like a full and independent review of all of the data about Dutton’s life. It’s absurd to just focus on recent days, when if you look over the last sixty-six years a steady pattern emerges of a living, breathing Dutton.
“All we want is an independent review of the data.”